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God Allows Us To Choose      Genesis 12:1-9; 13:8-13      Jan. 13, 2008

Many of the consequences affecting our lives became reality because of our choices. If I look back on my late teen age years I see differences in my life compared to friends because of the choices I made related to Christ and His church. I met my wife at church. The best friends I have had through the years are church people, and some of them have remained close friends through the years. God used the influence of my mother and good men and women in the church to greatly influenced my life. He allowed me to make choices through the years. As I look back I see His hand more clearly directing me than I realized. I wanted to choose His way and I am thankful God Allows Us To Choose.

1. Abram Chose To Obey The . . Call Of God. 12:1-3

  A. Abram Obeyed Relating To The . . Premise Of The Call. 12:1
1 The Lord said to Abram: Go out from your land, your relatives, and your father's house to the land that I will show you.

B. Abram Obeyed Relating To The . . Promise Of The Call. 12:2-3
2 I will make you into a great nation, I will bless you, I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. 3 I will bless those who bless you, I will curse those who treat you with contempt, and all the peoples on earth will be blessed through you.

C. Abram Obeyed Relating To The . . Perimeters Of The Call. 12:4-5

    1. Perimeters Related Through . . Blood Relationship. 12:4-5a
        4 So Abram went, as the Lord had told him, and Lot went with him. Abram was 75 years old
he left Haran. 5 He took his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, all the possessions they had accumulated,. . ."

2. Perimeters Related Through . .
Bought Relationships. 12:5b
    ". . . and the people he had acquired in Haran, and they set out for the land of Canaan. When they came to the land of Canaan,

    Abram burst on the pages of our Bible almost unannounced and unexplained, and then we hear of God's call in His life. Through the years I have noted many newer Christians answering the call of God for ministry or service. Abram obeyed the call of God. He obediently related to the premise of the call, received God's promise, and with his family followed the perimeters involved. Then, and now, when the call is understood by one family member they need to realize the fact that obedience to God does not negate the family. Sometimes a man may have to wait until the wife understands the call also.

2. Abram Chose To Obey The . . Celebration Of Worship. 12:6-9

  A. Abram's Celebration Of Worship After God's . . Conformation. 12:6-7
    6 Abram passed through the land to the site of Shechem, at the oak of Moreh. At that time the Canaanites were in the land. 7 But the Lord appeared to Abram and said, "I will give this land to your offspring." So he built an altar there to the Lord who had appeared to him.

B. Abram's Celebration Of Worship After God's . . Counsel. 12:8-9
    8 From there he moved on to the hill country east of Bethel and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east. There he built an altar to the Lord and worshiped Him. 9 Then Abram journeyed by stages to the Negev. HCSB

        Worship proceeds from our understanding of scripture, and our personal walk with God. We can note highlights in Abram's worship experiences as he witnessed the confirmation of God's presence or obeyed His counsel. What events would be a foundation for you as you spoke about your most meaningful worship experiences? It might very well be when you sensed God's presence and voice in a more meaningful manner. It might also include a journey where you obeyed the counsel of God and rejoiced in His guidance and protection.

3. Abram Chose To Obey The . . Compromises For Fellowship. 13:8-13

  A. Abram . . Began The Compromises Of Fellowship. 13:8-9
    8 Then Abram said to Lot, "Please, let's not have quarreling between you and me, or
between your herdsmen and my herdsmen, since we are relatives. 9 Isn't the whole land before you? Separate from me: if you go to the left, I will go to the right; if you go to the right, I will go to the left."

B. Abram . . Bowed To The Compromises or Fellowship. 13:10-13
    10 Lot looked out and saw that the entire Jordan Valley as far as Zoar was well-watered everywhere like the Lord's garden and the land of Egypt. This was before God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah.
11 So Lot chose the entire Jordan Valley for himself. Then Lot journeyed eastward, and they separated from each other. 12 Abram lived in the land of Canaan, but Lot lived in the cities of the valley and set up his tent near Sodom. 
13 Now the men of Sodom were evil, sinning greatly against the Lord. HCSB

        Abram and Lot avoided a great conflict by compromising. Abram began the idea of compromise, and it pleased Lot. Do you think God led Abram to offer the compromise? I do! Abram could have demanded the best but he bowed to the choice Lot made. Many times the key to compromise is the generosity of one party.   At first it appears he may have been too generous. But the long look shows Abram acted wisely. What conflicts in your church could have been avoided through compromise? Too often people will not make the necessary compromises. Many times a cursing or blessing are simply a matter of compromise, but some egos, or personal opinions, get in the way. Christians should follow examples like Abram, but God Allows Us To Choose. Amen? Amen!